This unit was found to be equivalent to 88 ergs in air.
In most power plant scenarios, where the radiation environment is dominated by gamma or x rays applied uniformly to the whole body, 1 rad of absorbed dose gives 1 rem of effective dose.
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In other situations, the effective dose in rem might be thirty times higher or thousands of times lower than the absorbed dose in rad.
Silicon-based microelectronics break down under exposure to radiation.